Kathleen Pender, SF Chronicle

Kathleen Pender

SF Chronicle

San Francisco, CA, United States

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Past articles by Kathleen:

California's EDD freezes many people's unemployment benefits to combat fraud

The state’s Employment Development Department has suspended payments for numerous people because of fear of fraud. Many Californians who said they are legitimately unemployed say they desperately need the frozen funds. → Read More

Use it or lose it: Gift cards could become worthless if the issuer goes bankrupt

The number of retailers filing bankruptcies in 2020 was the highest in more than a decade, and more could follow. So if you have a gift card, use it. → Read More

New stimulus payments are coming to the Bay Area: Here’s what’s changed and what hasn’t

The new coronavirus relief bill also expands incentives for charitable giving. → Read More

How the new federal stimulus bill will help unemployed Californians

Some people in California could end up receiving as m any as 70 weeks of regular unemployment benefits including benefits already received, if Congress passes and President Trump signs the bill. → Read More

Bay Area home prices maintained record in November, despite out-migration

In a sign of the times, a Lafayette “tear-down” sold for $1.75 million, almost double the asking price, with 33 offers. → Read More

Some unemployed Californians could be forced to repay part of their pandemic benefits

The California Employment Development Department is requiring people who received more than $167 in Pandemic Unemployment Assistance to substantiate their 2019 net income or face a partial reduction and repayment of benefits. → Read More

How Prop. 19 property tax measure will (or won’t) affect real estate held in a trust

Some parents are transferring property into irrevocable trusts for their children before Feb. 16, to preserve a tax break that will expire when Prop. 19 takes effect in California. → Read More

Credit card issuers ax some perks, add others in response to pandemic

Bank of America becomes the latest financial institution to discontinue rental car coverage on one of its popular credit cards. → Read More

Insurers can't drop homeowners for one year in these California ZIP codes near recent wildfires

About 18% of California homeowners and renters near this year’s fires, including many in the Bay Area, will be protected from cancellations and non-renewals for at least a year. → Read More

Proposition 19, which modifies Prop. 13 property-tax breaks, maintaining its lead in California

The ballot measure would expand one property tax break for seniors but narrow another for transfers of real estate between parents and children. → Read More

Interactive map shows how much property tax you pay, compared to your neighbors

Proposition 15 got map creator Ian Webster interested in property taxes in California, but he wanted the data to speak for itself. → Read More

San Francisco condos are the Bay Area's weakest real estate market. So why aren't home prices dropping more?

A shift to bigger homes is playing out in sales for city neighborhoods and across the Bay Area. → Read More

Bay Area homebuyers scoop up shrinking inventory at furious pace

The Bay Area real estate market continued its roaring recovery in September, as buyers took advantage of ultra-low mortgage rates to scoop up a shrinking number of homes for sale at an astonishing pace. → Read More

California stops taking new unemployment applications until Oct. 5 as EDD retools

Amid a huge backlog in unemployment claims that need to be processed, a strike team appointed by Gov. Gavin Newsom recommended major changes to the state’s beleaguered Employment Development Department. → Read More

Running out of California unemployment benefits? Here’s what comes next

Millions of Californians who got laid off after shelter-in-place orders took effect will soon exhaust their initial 26 weeks of state unemployment benefits. Many will qualify automatically for up to 33 weeks of additional benefits. → Read More

See which bills affecting California consumers and taxpayers did and did not pass

Before adjourning Monday, the state Legislature passed bills on consumer financial protection and paid family leave, but failed to raise taxes on the richest Californians or deal with some wildfire issues. → Read More

SF's housing market is weakening as some suburbs see 'crazy heated insanity'

San Francisco was the weakest for-sale housing market in the Bay Area in July, as buyers shunned communal living and lack of outdoor space. → Read More

Missing stimulus payments, inherited IRAs: Bay Area money questions answered

Some people who didn’t get their $500-per-child stimulus payment for eligible dependents can now enter information in an IRS online tool by Sept. 30 to claim it. → Read More

Unemployment will drop by $600 next week unless Congress acts soon

More than half of people receiving unemployment benefits are getting more than they earned when working, thanks to the extra $600 per week coming from Congress. Some lawmakers want to extend the benefit after it expires this month, at a reduced amount. → Read More

With returns due July 15, IRS closes out its most taxing season ever

In the height of tax season, the IRS was forced to close its offices and phone lines, issue stimulus payments and write guidance for coronavirus-relief bills, while dealing with an antiquated computer system. Maybe that’s why your refund is late. → Read More